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Saturday, May 25, 2024

'What was it they knew? Very little about “life.” They knew their own souls, they knew their own minds and hearts'

On Saturday, May 25, 2024 at 9:09 am by Cristina in , , , , ,    No comments
The Times echoes the news of the Brussels square to be named after the Brontë sisters.
Charlotte and Emily are to give their names to a newly created square in Brussels, Belgium, next year to mark the time the sisters lived in the Belgian capital 180 years ago. Their stay had a marked influence on Charlotte, in particular, and may even have provided the inspiration for the romantic hero Mr Rochester in her most famous work, Jane Eyre.
“The link has never been as widely known as it should be and until now there’s never been a Brontë street or Brontë square,” said Helen MacEwan, author of The Brontës in Brussels. “That this is about to change is great news for Brontë lovers everywhere and good for Brussels.”
“This is a really exciting development. Charlotte and Emily’s time in Brussels is an important part of the Brontë story and it’s totally fitting that their legacy will be commemorated in the city in this way,” said Rebecca Yorke, director of the Brontë Society and Parsonage Museum in Haworth.
Brussels had a very different impact on the sisters to Haworth. Both were in their twenties when they came to learn French from 1842 to 1843, because it was cheaper than Paris. They studied at a small school boarding house, or pensionnat, run by the teachers Constantin Héger and his wife, Zoe.
Although both sisters were taught by Héger, many believe that Charlotte fell in love with him and he inspired the character of Mr Rochester.
Emily left the city as soon as she had the chance and never apparently referred to her time in Belgium. In contrast Charlotte returned a second time for another year to teach English and music at the Pensionnat Héger.
The plan is to make part of Rue des Braves in the Koekelberg district into a square, Place des soeurs Brontë, designed by the Suede 36 consultancy, to be inaugurated next year.
The square, which is near a library and a school, will feature trees, a garden with benches and reading areas around a statue of the sisters, and quotations from Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre, chosen by local residents and carved in stone.
“It is in vain to say human beings ought to be satisfied with tranquillity: they must have action; and they will make it if they cannot find it,” reads one of the chosen quotes from Jane Eyre.
Tom Frantzen, a popular sculptor whose playful statues are dotted around Brussels, has worked on a maquette of Charlotte and Emily walking on the windswept Yorkshire moors.
MacEwan, the founder of the Brussels Brontë Group, said the link to the Koekelberg suburb of Brussels was an important one for the sisters.
“The link came through Charlotte’s close friend, Mary Taylor, who was studying at a school called the Château de Koekelberg with her sister, Martha, while the Brontës were at the Pensionnat Héger near Place Royale [in the centre]. Charlotte and Emily used to visit,” she said.
“Mary Taylor, a feminist who believed women should earn their own living, went on to run a store in New Zealand, lead a party of women up Mont Blanc [in the Alps] and write a feminist novel, Miss Miles.”
Muriel de Viron, the alderman for public works in Koekelberg, said the square would mark sisters “who left their mark on the history of literature and feminism”. She added: “We need more squares and street names with women’s names to make them visible in the public space.”
Charlotte’s darkly romantic novel Villette, published in 1853 at a bleak time in her life, was set in a fictional European city where both people and places were painted in an unflattering light. “Charlotte’s wonderful, dark novel Villette is closely based on her years in Belgium,” MacEwan said.
When it had been translated into French, the fictitious city name Villette was changed to “Bruxelles” in the text, upsetting many who felt wronged after seeing themselves in her story.
Such was the bad blood that her friend Elizabeth Gaskell, whose Life of Charlotte Brontë was published in 1857, vowed never to write another biography because she faced so many complaints and threats of legal action.
Letters from Charlotte to Héger, a romantic figure who had fought on the barricades during Belgium’s national revolution in 1830, were first published in the Times in 1913, recording her angry despair at his failure to return her affections.
“Day after day disappointment flings me down again into overwhelming misery,” she wrote. “I am in a fever. I lose my appetite and my sleep. I pine away.” (Bruno Waterfield)
Funnily enough, LitHub shares an article by writer Ursula K. Le Guin on 'How to Become a Writer' and mentions Charlotte and Emily's Brussels experience.
The most frequent evasive tactic is for the would-be writer to say, But before I have anything to say, I must get experience.
Well, yes; if you want to be a journalist. But I don’t know anything about journalism, I’m talking about fiction. And of course fiction is made out of experience, your whole life from infancy on, everything you’ve thought and done and seen and read and dreamed. But experience isn’t something you go and get—it’s a gift, and the only prerequisite for receiving it is that you be open to it. A closed soul can have the most immense adventures, go through a civil war or a trip to the moon, and have nothing to show for all that “experience”; whereas the open soul can do wonders with nothing. I invite you to meditate on a pair of sisters. Emily and Charlotte. Their life experience was an isolated vicarage in a small, dreary English village, a couple of bad years at a girls’ school, another year or two in Brussels, which is surely the dullest city in all Europe, and a lot of housework. Out of that seething mass of raw, vital, brutal, gutsy Experience they made two of the greatest novels ever written: Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights.
Now, of course they were writing from experience; writing about what they knew, which is what people always tell you to do; but what was their experience? What was it they knew? Very little about “life.” They knew their own souls, they knew their own minds and hearts; and it was not a knowledge lightly or easily gained. From the time they were seven or eight years old, they wrote, and thought, and learned the landscape of their own being, and how to describe it. They wrote with the imagination, which is the tool of the farmer, the plow you plow your own soul with. They wrote from inside, from as deep inside as they could get by using all their strength and courage and intelligence. And that is where books come from. The novelist writes from inside.
2:21 am by M. in , ,    No comments
Brontë research articles produced in Indonesia and Iraq:
Revenge in Emily Brontë's Novel Wuthering Heights
Lia Safitri, Asnani Asnani
Journal of Language,  Vol 6, No 1

The research seeks to uncover the causal factors and detrimental effects of revenge as depicted in Emily Brontë’s novel, Wuthering Heights. Given its focus on societal phenomena, the chosen methodology is the descriptive qualitative approach, aimed at elucidating these social dynamics. The analysis draws upon theories of revenge proposed by Barcaccia et al. and Schwartz, which respectively delve into the underlying elements of vengeance. Revenge arises from a potent desire to seek retribution for perceived injustices, often manifesting as the infliction of harm or suffering upon the perceived wrongdoer. However, rather than achieving justice, revenge often perpetuates a cycle of retaliation, as individual interpretations of moral equilibrium seldom align. Wuthering Heights serves as the primary source of data, with textual excerpts informing the analysis. The findings reveal three primary instigators of revenge: betrayal, injustice, and insult, with resultant negative impacts including depression and anxiety.
Haydar Jabr Koban, Asst. Prof., Mazaya University College and  Taif Abdulhussein Dakhil,  Asst. Lecturer., Dijlah University College
International Journal of Health Sciences,  Vol. 6 No. S4 (2022) 

Gothic literature in general and Gothic fiction, in particular, can be defined as a literary piece of writing that uses dark scenery and a whole atmosphere of exoticism, mystery, fear, and terror. This paper aims to explore the elements of Gothic complex spectrality in Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights (1847). The novel, known for being one of the greatest love stories ever published, explored many Gothic elements that added a sense of fear and terror to its plot. The Gothic factors were not traditional or similar to other Gothic fiction, even though Brontë was greatly influenced by Gothic fiction in her childhood. Nevertheless, she had created her Gothic world that broke the confines of the traditional and resulted in Wuthering Heights, which is still a topic of interest after more than centuries of its creation.

Friday, May 24, 2024

Friday, May 24, 2024 7:33 am by Cristina in , , , , ,    No comments
More on the square in Koekelberg that could be named after the Brontës in The Brussels Times.
Brussels is attempting to bring back the spirit of the famous Brontë sisters to the city, as the municipality of Koekelberg announced that it is taking concrete steps to name a public square after the English authors next year.
Koekelberg wants to put the Brontë sisters on the Belgian map, as two of them – Charlotte and Emily – came to Brussels in 1842 to study French. This was the only time they went abroad, according to author of 'The Brontës in Brussels' Helen MacEwan.
The square would be the first in Brussels to be named after the Bröntes [sic] . While the various steps for the creation and naming of the square have taken some time – having first been announced in 2020 – the plan is to inaugurate it in 2025, the municipality announced at a public meeting last week.
The plan is to transform part of Rue des Braves into a square and call it the Place des Soeurs Brontë/Gezusters Brontëplein. In addition to discussions surrounding the square's vegetation and street furniture, there was also a proposal to display several quotes from the sisters' famous novels (such as Charlotte's 'Jane Eyre' and Emily's 'Wuthering Heights').
While the funding has not yet been confirmed, sculptor Tom Frantzen (who previously created the iconic statues of Pieter Bruegel and Jacques Brel in Brussels) might also provide a sculpture of Charlotte and Emily. (Maïthé Chini)
The Telegraph and Argus highlights some of the events that will take place during the forthcoming Bradford Literature Festival (June 28-July 7) and one of them is this one:
Brontë enthusiast, Christa Ackroyd, will be leading a historical journey by vintage coach to Thornton village. (Natasha Meek)
A contributor to IWMBuzz claims that Jane Eyre and other novels romanticise death.
Coming to core literature, if you have been a Brontë fan, I would like to mention some of her creations that have largely bothered the readers. Charlotte Brontë’s, Jane Eyre (1847), and Elizabeth Gaskell’s Ruth (1853) and North and South (1855). Arguably, these pieces romanticise death, more specifically, the deaths caused by tuberculosis. By romanticizing the disease, the characters in these novels glorify tuberculosis, portraying it as something beautiful rather than horrific. They also use it as a means to beautify the notion of God taking their loved ones prematurely.
What is felt is that the characters who succumb to tuberculosis are depicted as virtuous and beautiful individuals, and that their religious faith significantly influences their fate in succumbing to the illness. It was common in the 19th century. (Shatakshi Ganguly)
1:23 am by M. in ,    No comments
A chapter in this newly published Brazilian book:
Ciéncias Humanas e Sociais: Tópicos Atuais Em Pesquera - Volume 4
Edited by Marcelo da Fonseca Ferreira da Silva and Flávio Aparecido de Almeida
Editora Científica Digital
ISBN 978-65-5360-584-8
May 2024

Esta obra constituiu-se a partir de um processo colaborativo entre professores, estudantes e pesquisadores que se destacaram e qualificaram as discussões neste espaço formativo. Resulta, também, de movimentos interinstitucionais e de ações de incentivo à pesquisa que congregam pesquisadores das mais diversas áreas do conhecimento e de diferentes Instituições de Educação Superior públicas e privadas de abrangência nacional e internacional. Tem como objetivo integrar ações interinstitucionais nacionais e internacionais com redes de pesquisa que tenham a finalidade de fomentar a formação continuada dos profissionais da educação, por meio da produção e socialização de conhecimentos das diversas áreas do Saberes. Agradecemos aos autores pelo empenho, disponibilidade e dedicação para o desenvolvimento e conclusão dessa obra. Esperamos também que esta obra sirva de instrumento didático-pedagógico para estudantes, professores dos diversos níveis de ensino em seus trabalhos e demais interessados pela temática.
The chapter six is:
by Joice Aparecida de Souza Pinto and Lilian Fernandes Carneiro

O presente trabalho baseia-se em atividade de análise textual, com foco nos estudos comparativos de literatura, a partir das relações estabelecidas entre o conto Venha ver o Pôr do Sol, autoria de Lygia Fagundes Telles e do romance O Morro dos Ventos Uivantes (Wuthering Heights), de Emily Jane Brontë, por ênfase os sentimentos que articulam a trama: o amor e o ódio, concretizados nos relacionamentos amorosos dos protagonistas de ambas as obras. A base metodológica concentra-se nos estudos da literatura comparada de Tânia Carvalhal, e circunscreve-se ao espaço das narrativas e suas associações aos efeitos do fantástico com base em David Roas. François Laplantine e Liana Trindade fundamentam os estudos do Imaginário e suas relações com o fantástico. Além disso, analisar-se-á a construção do espaço como elemento essencial na estruturação da narrativa, evidenciando-se como um lugar de referência para analisar a inter-relação amor e ódio. Estudar-se-á nas obras a presença do fantástico e do imaginário, o que possibilitará o entendimento a respeito do tema e, consequentemente, promoverá a aquisição de conhecimento para novas interpretações; conforme Umberto Eco, a obra é aberta e nos permite visualizar esta conexão, como também a sua plurissignificação. Por conseguinte, poder-se-á perceber a relevância de mesclar obras nacionais com textos traduzidos e, seguidamente, favorecer o acesso a outros leitores, difundindo a obra clássica ao propiciar a interculturalidade.

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Thursday, May 23, 2024 7:35 am by Cristina in , , , , ,    No comments
Nippertown has a short interview with Jasmine Roth, director of the play You On the Moors Now” at the Yulman Theatre at Union College.
Q: What is the action of “You on the Moors Now” and how does it resonate with you?
A: In “You On the Moors Now” four famous heroines from four famous novels (Lizzie Bennet, Jane Eyre, Jo March and Cathy Earnshaw) all run away from their suitors and find each other instead. They go off on an adventure to find themselves and see the world, but their suitors are angry and wage war against them instead. Throughout so much of human history a woman's societal obligation has been to get married and have children. When the novels this play is based on were written the stakes of turning down a marriage proposal were so high, and yet each of these heroines fought for equality in their own way inside their story. This play- which bends time and space - allows them to do even more than they could in the time frames of their own story- liberating them beyond what could have been. These have been some of my favorite novels throughout my life, so it's thrilling to be able to explore these characters in a new light, and pay homage to the original texts.
Q: What has surprised you about this process that you think the audience might really enjoy?
A: The play is really physical — we're scaling cliff sides and running over hills. We wanted to really bring the adventurous landscape of the moors to life and the set really does that. Our scenic designer Andrew Mannion took a lot of inspiration from photos of the moors, but also kids clubhouses, war museums, old books and playgrounds. (Patrick White)
Still on stage, GB News reviews Underdog: The Other Other Brontë.
At one point in Gordon’s drama, Charlotte Brontë reflects on the perceived witchy nature of her and her sisters’ work; female collaboration has, at various points in history, been seen as a dangerous thing with wicked possibilities.
Considering the Brontës’ firm place in the literary canon, and Sarah Gordon’s work alongside Natalie Ibu with this play, that assumption is proven true.
Gordon’s work certainly akes time to acclimatise to - it is a bolshy, sweary love letter to the power of female authorship which worked well as a complete package, despite certain moments feeling slightly overworked and clunky. [...]
Underdog follows the sisters’ struggle to publish their works, the - at times toxic - rivalry between them, and the heartbreaking deaths of Emily and Anne which cut short their flourishing literary careers.
The boldness and bravery of the Brontës’ endeavour - often tackling taboo subjects of domestic violence, female independence, and financial inequality in an age of rapid industrial expansion - is entirely reflected in Grace Smart’s beautiful costuming.
Charlotte (Gemma Whelan) wears a bright cherry-red gown, with Emily (Adele James) in blue and Anne (Rhiannon Clements) in purple.
Gordon’s biting script for Charlotte is excellently handled by the inimitable Gemma Whelan. It is cheeky and witty and moves at a great pace.
Gordon’s script truly sings, though, when she weaves the Brontës’ own words alongside her own. Anne’s death scene is expertly intertwined with Caroline’s near-death in Charlotte’s third novel Shirley, creating a stunning mix of the real and the fictional; when reflecting on Charlotte’s own futility, Whelan beautifully delivered Emily’s poem, High Waving Heather.
More of these kinds of moments would have certainly tipped the play over into legendary status.
A note once more on Grace Smart’s set design. In contrast to the natural landscape of the moor is a black, worn, scuffed backdrop which serves as a reminder of the contextual industrial setting the Brontës were writing in. Where the staging really came into its own was in the scene where Charlotte and Anne were exchanging letters. [...]
There’s a lot of (at times unnecessary) swearing in Underdog. There’s also a lot of frivolity (a farcical carriage ride to London, say, or Anne’s persistent questioning of Charlotte) which could perhaps be trimmed. But alongside this, there are some excellent observations on a family who created such incredible cultural heritage from a small vicarage in Haworth. (Katie Bowen)
The Telegraph recommends '10 underrated corners of the UK for a weekend break' and one of them is 
The Calder Valley
[...] It is worth visiting just for a wander among the moorlands, but then there’s the brooding, eternally misty Todmorden, which is home to an indoor market serving impressively good coffee. Hike towards Pendle for moody cloudscapes one minute, glowing, sunlit hillsides the next. Literary types can turn the other way for a stomp across Brontë country, or head towards Sylvia Plath’s burial place in Heptonstall. (Sophie Dickinson)
12:59 am by M. in ,    No comments
Exploring Mrs. Reed in Jane Eyre:
Study of Mrs. Reed’s Multi-dimensional Image from the Perspective of Sigmund Freud’s Personality Structure Theory
by Shihan Wang and Chengyao Jian
Journal of Education and Educational Research, 8(2), 238-240.

Jane Eyre is a classic written by British female writer Charlotte Brontë. In this paper, the author makes a comprehensive analysis of a minor character in the novel, Mrs. Reed. It is found that Mrs. Reed is a hard-hearted and cruel aunt, a doting mother and a jealous wife. Then, Freud’s personality structure theory is employed to interpret Mrs. Reed’s multi-faceted image. Firstly, Mrs. Reed is influenced by the “id” factor which makes her indulgent in her own nature, unconstrained by social rules, and behave as a hard-hearted, jealous and doting woman. Secondly, “ego” factor also shapes Mrs. Reed’s image as Mrs. Reed does show humanity occasionally under the rules and pressures of reality. In order to adapt to the social environment and cope with external pressures, Mrs. Reed displays a multifaceted and complicated personality in different situations.

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Wednesday, May 22, 2024 7:30 am by Cristina in , , ,    No comments
We always love an article that vindicates Anne and Financial Times does just that ahead of the 175th anniversary of her death on Monday.
One hundred and seventy five years ago, a young writer died of tuberculosis in Scarborough, where she had begged her sister to take her so that she might see the sea before she left this Earth. Anne Brontë was only 29, but she had already published poems and two striking novels, Agnes Grey (1847) and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (1848).
The quietest of the three Brontë sisters is on the brink of a revival. Recent UK theatrical productions, especially Emme Hoy’s 2022 adaptation of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall and Sarah Gordon’s light but pointed Underdog: The Other Other Brontë running at the National Theatre in London, are bringing Anne out of the shadows at last.
Anne was never completely obscure, but nonetheless thrown into the shade by the multitude of biographies devoted to her sisters, not to mention the deluge of TV and film adaptations. While the few standalone biographies are excellent, including Ada M Harrison and Derek Stanford’s 1959 volume, Edward Chitham’s 1991 Life and Nick Holland’s illuminating In Search of Anne Brontë, they struggle to compete with the deluge of content devoted to Charlotte and Emily.
I had, like many people, neglected her woefully; reading Agnes Grey and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall just recently was a hair-raising experience, an introduction to her merciless eye and boldness in tackling taboos — the casual viciousness of Victorian children, alcoholism and marriage, domestic abuse.
At 19, Anne became a governess at Blake Hall in Mirfield, less than 20 miles away from the Brontës’ home at Haworth. It was, she wrote in a letter, “misery” to be charged with children who acted like “mischievous turbulent rebels”; her only outlet in those eight miserable months was secretly writing Agnes Grey, which drew freely on her travails. Her protagonist occupies a position light years away from the genteel governessing of Jane Eyre. “The name of governess, I soon found, was a mere mockery as applied to me,” Agnes writes. “My pupils had no more notion of obedience than a wild, unbroken colt.”  The boy in her care delights in torturing baby birds; the girl turns into an obdurate block, lying on the floor during her lessons.
Some of her biographers speculate that Mirfield inspired one of the stately manors in The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, while Ponden Hall in Yorkshire may have inspired Wildfell Hall itself. She creates a stirring heroine in Helen Huntingdon, who supports herself as an artist by — astonishingly for the period — selling her own accomplished sketches and paintings. She then runs away from home with her young son to Wildfell, rejecting suitors with the bald proclamation that she simply does not like them.
But Anne also conjures the horrors of life with an alcoholic husband. She, Emily and Charlotte had first-hand experience of alcoholism — their brother Branwell drowned his artistic gifts in drink, and the sisters were left to nurse him or clean up his frequent messes. When Tenant was published, the novel stirred up both praise and accusations that it was scandalous. Charles Kingsley, reviewing it for Fraser’s Magazine, said it was powerful and interesting, but also declared that it was “utterly unfit to be put into the hands of girls”. The Spectator felt it necessary to warn readers of the author’s “morbid love for the coarse, not to say the brutal”.
Reading the Brontës, perhaps the greatest difference is, while Charlotte wrote for readers who might prefer high romance to the dreary messiness of life, Anne wrote for governesses like herself — gentlewomen who found themselves thrust into a demeaning position, grappling with little tyrants and their indifferent parents. For, if Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre are passionate love stories, Tenant is an anti-romance, profoundly disillusioned by the realities of courtship and marriage — and thus perhaps the first truly feminist novel. In 1914, the suffragist May Sinclair called it “faintly prophetic, propped between Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights, it stands as the presentment of that Feminist novel which we all know.”
One of the great literary mysteries concerns Charlotte Brontë’s refusal to allow Tenant to be republished after Anne’s death. Was this sibling rivalry, or a desire to protect her sister’s posthumous image? Or perhaps it was a fear that Anne had succeeded too well in drawing an accurate portrait of Branwell in his cups. It was only after Charlotte’s death in 1855, of complications in her pregnancy after her brief marriage, that the book finally returned to the public eye. 
For anyone searching for the real Anne, not the frail, little, gentle woman of myth, I urge them to read her fiery preface to Tenant’s second edition, published just a few months before she died. “All novels are or should be written for both men and women to read,” she writes. “If I can gain the public ear at all, I would rather whisper a few wholesome truths therein than much soft nonsense.” What an unexpected pleasure, to find an author who eschews “soft nonsense”, dipping her pen instead in black irony and molten steel. (Nilanjana Roy)
Somehow we feel that Anne is always 'on the brink of a revival' which never quite materialises, but articles like this one should surely help.

We would like to add, though, that Winifred Gérin also published an excellent stand-alone biography of Anne. We don't think that Charlotte, who was enjoying her own success with Jane Eyre, was particularly jealous of the bad press Anne was getting and her decision not to republish The Tenant of Wildfell Hall was so that her sister's reputation could be saved after her death. However, it was not so straightforward as Charlotte dying and The Tenant of Widlfell Hall being republished. The novel had been published without Charlotte's consent in a maimed version which was seen in editions of the novel released well into the 20th century. That's why it hasn't been seen as the powerful novel it really is as, for many decades, it has been read as an incomplete work.
12:30 am by M. in ,    No comments
Brontë scholars from Senegal and Costa Rica:
Class Consciousness in Charlotte Brontë’s The Professor (1857)
Alphonse Sambou
Université AssaneSeck de Ziguinchor, Senegal
ATRAS Journal, Volume 04, Issue 1, p. 108 (2023)

This article is a reflection on the victorian society as described by Charlotte Brontë. It tries to highlight the different evils of English society in the 19th century. Indeed, it shows to what extent the themes of class struggle, solitude, gender, and, finally, social injustice, are « boisterous metaphors » to the writer Charlotte Brontë.
“The Whole Island”. Literary space and intertextuality in Wide Sargasso Sea, by Jean Rhys
Beatriz M. Goenaga Conde
ÍSTMICA Revista de la Facultad de Filosofía y Letras 1 (33):11-39 (2024)

El objetivo fundamental de este artículo está dirigido a valorar las funciones de la intertextualidad en la construcción del espacio insular caribeño en Wide Sargasso Sea, de la escritora dominiquesa Jean Rhys. Por tal motivo se analizaron las relaciones intertextuales entre Jean Eyre, de Charlotte Brontë, y Wide Sargasso Sea, de Jea Rhys, con énfasis en la isla en tanto espacio literario presentado de manera explícita. Como resultado se pudo constatar que la principal función de la intertextualidad en dicho texto responde a la intención calibanesca y desmitificadora de desmonte de los arquetipos en los que la imagen del otro ha sido construida en el discurso del poder. De igual manera, el presente análisis permite develar la riqueza de las connotaciones otorgadas en el texto al espacio isla y a sus significados añadidos. La red de significaciones encontradas refuerza su identidad cultural caribeña.

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Tuesday, May 21, 2024 7:36 am by Cristina in , , , , ,    No comments
Flaunt features author Joyce Carol Oates.
Oates considers on the learning lessons inherent to fiction. “You go back into another era. And then when you go back into your own life, you compare, and you can see how different things were and sort of feel it, rather than just an intellectual apprehension of it, which you get by reading non-fiction. But if you’re really reading, say, Jane Eyre, or Jane Austen, you have the emotions. I think that we learn so much from fiction that we can’t in any other way.” (Franchesca Baratta)
David Britton, managing director of David Britton Estates, said: “I love properties with a rich heritage and a tale to tell, and Mossgill House ticks all the boxes. The connection to the Brontë family is fascinating; parts of Mossgill are a direct replica of The Parsonage, which is now a popular tourist attraction.
“This property is substantial, with an acre of fantastic grounds. It’s full of history, charm, and a real touch of class.” Built around 1747, the architect behind Mossgill was the same man who designed the Parsonage at Haworth. Patrick Brontë was a good friend of the Rev. William Fawcett, a Baptist Minister who lived in Mossgill House at that time and he frequently used to visit.
The electric guitar featured on Kate Bush's 1978 debut Wuthering Heights is expected to fetch up to £10,000 at auction.
The 1974 Les Paul Custom belonged to guitarist Ian Bairnson, who played the solo at the end of Wuthering Heights while his arm was in a plaster cast. (Janelle Borg)
The latest news about the Brontë's very own square at Koekelberg on the Brussels Brontë Blog.
12:30 am by M. in    No comments
A recent Bachelor Thesis in Spanish:
by Mireia Garcia Domenech
Treball Fi de Grau, Universitat Internacional de Catalunya, Facultat d’Humanitats, Grau d’Humanitats, 2024

The present research focuses on the analysis of two classic novels, Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre and Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, to explore the connection between mobility and female subversion. The protagonists, Jane Eyre and Elizabeth Bennet, defy the social conventions of their time and embark on personal journeys in search of autonomy and fulfillment. The main objective is to quantify and analyze the journeys of the protagonists to understand the extent to which they challenge norms and provide for a more precise qualification and quantification of their rebellion and resistance, offering a novel approach in this field.


Monday, May 20, 2024

Monday, May 20, 2024 11:36 am by Cristina in , , ,    No comments
Den of Geek! wonders whether it's 'Too Late to Save Eloise Bridgerton From Her Book Fate' and claims that,
It’s too late for Jane Eyre, who by rights should have told Mr Rochester in that burned-out ruin to get a guide dog because she was off to start a school for orphans where they don’t die of TB. It’s too late for Emma Woodhouse, who should have told Mr Knightley to get off her back, she’s only 21, and he’s not her bloody dad so stop taking everything so seriously. (Louisa Mellor)
Breaking news: the actual world when those novels were written didn't work like the made-up world of Bridgerton. And no, we don't think Jane should have decided that (and neither should Emma).

The Nerd Daily interviews writer Libby Gill.
When did you discover your love of books and writing?
Books: In a seventh grade English class reading Jane Eyre. (Elise Dumpleton)
Irish News and others report that the guitar that accompanied Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights is to be sold at auction following guitarist Ian Bairnson's death last year.
The guitar on which the solo at the end of Kate Bush’s classic debut hit Wuthering Heights was played is expected to sell for up to £10,000 at auction.
Guitarist Ian Bairnson, who played the piece with his arm in a plaster cast after breaking it, died last year aged 70, and his collection of instruments is being auctioned by his family.
The guitar, a 1974 Les Paul Custom, will be sold at Gardiner Houlgate auctioneers in Wiltshire and is expected to attract bids of up to £10,000. (Rod Minchin)
The Salt Lake Tribune features local business LitJoy Crate, makers and creators of bookish subscription boxes.
At the LitJoy Crate warehouse in Lehi, the lobby holds an arch made of books, and under it a bookshelf containing many of the special edition books the company has helped create: popular series like “Red Queen” by Victoria Aveyard, as well as such classics as “Pride and Prejudice,” “Wuthering Heights” and “Jane Eyre.” (Palak Jayswal)
1:23 am by M. in    No comments
Some recent Russian scholar Brontë research:
Соколова, А. Ю., Дудко, Л. В.,  Sokolova, Alina Yu. Dudko,  and Larisa V.
XXVII Международная конференция «Иностранный язык в сфере профессиональной коммуникации в условиях реальной и виртуальной среды»
International Conference "A Foreign Language in the Field of Professional Communication In a Real and Virtual Environment"

В опоре на текстовую категорию тональности идентифицируются переводческие стратегии И. Гуровой и В. Станевич при переводе романа Шарлотты Бронте «Джейн Эйр» на русский язык (фрагмент «красной комнаты»). Выявлено, что И. Гурова тяготеет к сохранению атмосферы потустороннего, в то время как В. Станевич делает акцент на передаче эмоций маленькой Джейн.
Based on the textual category of tonality, the translation strategies of I. Gurova and V. Stanevich are identified when rendering Charlotte Brontë’s novel “Jane Eyre” into Russian (the “red-room” fragment). I. Gurova has been revealed to preserve the otherworldly atmosphere, whereas V. Stanevich focuses on conveying little Jane’s emotions.

Exploring the Legacy of the Bronté Sisters: Pioneers of English Literature

Ta’limda Raqamli Texnologiyalarni Tadbiq Etishning Zamonaviy Tendensiyalari Va Rivojlanish Omillari, 31(1), 27-29 (2024)

This article provides a comprehensive overview of the lives, works, and legacy of the Brontë sisters—Charlotte, Emily, and Anne. It discusses their upbringing, literary contributions, and lasting impact on English literature. Each section is well-structured, providing key details about the sisters' backgrounds, notable works, and the societal context in which they lived and wrote. Additionally, it highlights the Brontë sisters' significance in challenging gender norms and paving the way for future generations of female writers. The conclusion succinctly emphasizes their enduring influence and encourages continued appreciation of their literary legacy.

Sunday, May 19, 2024

This is the Coast Radio reminds us of an interesting event taking place in Scarborough in a couple of weeks:
It's Scarborough's Big Ideas By The Sea festival over the next two weeks. (...)
The Big Ideas Festival features bell ringing, with a 'big dig' involving members of the public and a tribute to Anne Brontë ahead of the 175th anniversary of her death, on 28th May. (Andrew Snaith)
Collider vindicates the great Roger Corman's The Tomb of Ligeia 1964 Edgar Allan Poe adaptation:
This dour, low-key possession story is one not often adapted, mostly because it's so short. Still, the best one is a 1964 classic by the icon of cult cinema, Roger Corman, who just sadly passed away. The Tomb of Ligeia is the final entry into Corman's Poe Cycle, and by far the most obscure story he decided to adapt. He and writer Robert Towne ran into the issue of having to expand the story, so they took a tale of a man's descent into grief and made a hidden gem with notes from Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre, Daphne Du Maurier's Rebecca, and enough weird psychological complexes and Byronic hero shenanigans to enthrall anyone looking for a darker take on the regency romance. (Rhianna Malas)
The Independent reviews the new season of Bridgerton:
The fact that the BBC hasn’t commissioned an Austen adaptation in years – not to mention an Eliot or a Brontë or whisper it… a Trollope – implies “a crisis, or at least transition, in the genre of literary costume drama”, as the writer and broadcaster Mark Lawson argued last year. The in-depth, slow-burn adaptation that crams in the minutiae of the novel– for a textbook example, see Andrew Davies’ 2005 version of Bleak House, starring Gillian Anderson and Anna Maxwell Martin – seems to have fallen entirely out of style. Perhaps it is simply too expensive for a British broadcaster to broach these days, without the mega-budgets boasted by streamers.
The Irish Independent interviews the writer Moya Roddy:
Your favourite literary character?
Like a bad friend I love them and leave them, but the characters of Elizabeth Bennett, Jane Eyre, Tess, Anna Karenina are among my abiding favourites.
An alert for today, May 19, in Beverly, MA:
The Paul Madore Chorale presents a concert of music and poetry celebrating the earth and the life it supports. The three parts of the program are A Year in New England, Siesta, and Hello Earth, with poets ranging from Emily Brontë through Walt Whitman to Robert Frost. Their words have been set to music by such varied composers as Randall Thompson, Englebert Humperdinck, and Ola Gjeilo. Come join us for an exciting afternoon of music both classic and new. The performance is Sunday, May 19, 2024, at 3 pm at the First Baptist Church, 221 Cabot Street, Beverly, MA 01915.  (Patch Salem)
And another one for tomorrow, May 20, in Southampton, NY:
Classic Movie: Wuthering Heights (1939)
Mon, May 20, 2024 at 5:45 PM
Rogers Memorial Library, 91 Coopers Farm Rd, Southampton, NY, 11968
This adaptation of the Emily Brontë novel set in 19th-century England tells the classic tale of unfortunate lovers Heathcliff and Cathy, who despite their deep love for each other, are forced by circumstance and prejudice to live their lives apart. The film starred Merle Oberon, Sir Laurence Olivier, Hugh Williams, and David Niven, and received eight Academy Awards nominations, winning for Best Cinematography. (Patch Southampton)
GoldDerby publishes a top 15 of Laurence Olivier's films including Wuthering Heights 1939, of course:
7. Wuthering Heights 1939
Literary purists were appalled by this adaptation of Emily Brontë’s novel, which only depicts 16 of its 34 chapters, slashing an entire crop of characters from the narrative. Yet director William Wyler perfectly captures the gloomy, tragic mood of the book, thanks in large part to Gregg Toland’s atmospheric black-and-white cinematography (which won the Oscar). Olivier and Merle Oberon perfectly embody Heathcliff and Cathy, the doomed couple at the story’s center. The film does an expert job recreating Victorian England (with Thousand Oaks, CA, standing in for those windy hills), while the operatic performances make our hearts swoon. “Wuthering Heights” earned seven additional Oscar bids, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor for Olivier (he lost to Robert Donat in “Goodbye, Mr. Chips”). (Zach Laws & Chris Beachum)

Nexos reviews a Spanish translation of a selection of the poetry of Lorine Niedecker quoting from a 1947 letter where she said: 'The Brontës/had their moors, I have/my marshes!

El Español (Spain) reviews Bird by Andrea Arnold as seen at the Cannes Film Festival:
Bird es posiblemente su mejor película, lo que no es moco de pavo si pensamos en obras como Fish Tank (2009) o American Honey (2016), que a este cronista nunca le han convencido del todo –sí, sin embargo, su inspirada adaptación de Cumbres borrascosas–. (Carlos Reviriego) (Translation)
Through the Eyes of the Brontës goes "Back to Lively Banagher, Ireland".
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The new (double) issue of Brontë Studies (Volume 49  Issues 1-2  January-April 2024) is available online. We provide you with the table of contents and abstracts:
Editorial Introduction
pp. 1-5 Author: Claire O’Callaghan

Odd and incorrect’: Convention and Jane Eyre’s Feminist Legacy
pp. 6-23 Author: Katharine Hobbs
This article investigates the Victorian reception of Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre (1847) and the collision of literary criticism with political commentary. Brontë’s novel has always had a reputation for being politically troublesome, but no one seems to know why. My essay develops two claims. First, I argue that the novel’s political slipperiness stems from its critics’ inability to agree on what the work actually is. Jane Eyre provoked contradictory judgements from readers who could not reconcile it with existing frameworks of literary convention. The stakes were high, as attempts to define the novel’s genre fused with attempts to produce a coherent sense of literary and social history. Second, I argue that the liberal feminist subject that modern criticism projects backwards onto Jane Eyre did not exist for Victorian readers, and that Brontë’s governess heroine instead activates a historically fraught relationship between character, type, and women’s economic and legal roles. Rather than addressing Jane Eyre directly, I treat it as the absent centre of a debate over convention, waged in reviews, pamphlets and essays, that merged literary criticism with political commentary and set crucial precedents for mid-Victorian legal debates on the woman question.

Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights and Horace’s Ars Poetica, Lines 179–88: Nelly Dean as Tragic Nuntius
pp 24-37 Author: Russell M. Hillier
A manuscript in the Hugh Walpole Collection of King’s School, Canterbury, attributed to Emily Brontë, consists of translations from Virgil’s Aeneid and Horace’s Ars Poetica. In his groundbreaking analysis of the manuscript, Edward Chitham detects in Brontë’s translation of Horace’s treatise her indebtedness to its precepts on drama and he suggests that the role of chorus applies to Nelly Dean as the principal narrator in Wuthering Heights (1847). Expanding on Chitham’s findings, the article proposes that Nelly Dean more plausibly fulfils the role of a tragic nuntius or messenger. The main principle of the Ars Poetica is decorum, or literary propriety, and Horace instructs that it is decorous for extreme tragic violence to be represented through the nuntius’s reported speech. Nelly delivers an account of and presides over each of Wuthering Heights’s eleven reported deaths and, in accordance with Horatian standards of making known tragic catastrophe, acts as tragic nuntius. Brontë’s formal choices for Wuthering Heights would seem to conform to Horace’s advice that it is decorous for tragic events to be reported rather than performed on stage.

‘I thought unaccountably of fairy tales’: Jane Eyre, Form, and the Fairy Tale Bildungsroman
pp. 38-51 Author: Daniel Dougherty
Frequently Jane Eyre (1847) has been compared to various fairy tales, many of which are seemingly woven through the plot and characters of the novel. Largely unremarked upon however is the effect of those fairy tales on the form of the novel itself, particularly as those fairy tales collide with the Bildungsroman genre. Rather than reaffirming the telos-driven nature of both the fairy tale and the Bildungsroman, Charlotte Brontë, through Jane as narrator and protagonist, questions the narrative finality of both genres through their combination. The resultant Bildungsroman actively eschews any potential ossification of Jane as she invents and reinvents herself in her narration and deployment of narrative forms. Rather than a singular finished figure at the end of the novel, Jane offers a spectrum of identities that continue to grow and change from their initial contexts.

Charlotte Brontë’s Villette and the Book of Esther: A Pioneering Hermeneutic on Sexism and Xenophobia
pp. 52-68 Author: Channah Damatov
Anne Brontë’s deliberate exposition in The Tenant of Wildfell Hall of gendered violence as the consequence of the structurally embedded sexism in the Victorian patriarchal socio-legal system is a daring example of feminist critique that was ahead of its time. This article examines the afterlife of Brontë’s feminism in Sam Baker’s The Woman Who Ran (2016), a neo-Victorian domestic noir thriller which re(dis)covers and repurposes Brontë’s novel for contemporary women readers. Baker uncovers the ongoing crisis of domestic violence and sexism in professional spheres that persist despite the progress achieved by Western feminist movements to secure women’s rights in the last century. We argue that The Woman Who Ran demonstrates just how generative Anne Brontë’s writing remains for conceptualising feminist issues in the twenty-first century.

Anti-Hierarchical Development in Anne Brontë’s Agnes Grey
pp. 69-82 Author: Amanda Auerbach
This article offers an allegorical interpretation of the ostensibly realist elements of Anne Brontë’s 1847 novel Agnes Grey. Read non-allegorically, Agnes Grey appears to depict the triumph of the governess Agnes’s moral will over her desires that conflict with her duties, as occurs in the Bildungsroman. But the novel can also be seen as using Agnes’s evolving relationship with her pupils to consider the ideal way to prioritise and respond to the various impulses of the self and various members of a social community. The plot can then be seen as progressing towards the anti-hierarchical model of self and community that Brontë deems most ethical. This community largely corresponds to Talia Schaffer’s community of care.

Futuristic Flight: Science beside the Emotive in the Early Writing of Charlotte Brontë
pp. 83-98 Author: Julie Elizabeth Young
As a solitary mention within her juvenilia tale ‘Tales of the Islanders’ (1829), Charlotte Brontë’s fictitious reference to air balloon flight suggests a wider social and literary context for its author’s understanding of this new scientific phenomenon. This article examines the wider textual presence of this awe-inspiring invention and how her seemingly simple reference to balloons ultimately aligns her from an early age to a wider, Romantic female discourse, particularly to the writing of Mary Shelley. The prevalent references to balloon flight in newspapers, magazines and books available to Brontë at the time, imply a familiarity with these dialogues, which is ultimately suggestive of the material she read and was subsequently inspired by to include in her own writing. Brontë’s reference to balloons associates her work with a Romantic discourse contemporary to her, specifically a female one, which situates her as a young writer alert to the literary dialogue of the time, hinting at a style she would later use in her novels, one which juxtaposed scientific invention in the Industrial Age beside an emotive poetic voice.

Penistone Crags, Ponden Kirk and the Fairies of Wuthering Heights
pp. 99-115 Author: Simon Young
Penistone Crags in Wuthering Heights (1847) has long and, I argue, correctly been identified with Ponden Kirk on Haworth Moor. This article compares the folklore of Ponden Kirk with the fictional folklore associated with Penistone Crags, looking at the real-world and literary traditions in relation to beliefs surrounding the South Pennines. It suggests that some details of fairylore in Wuthering Heights—both the fairies in the ‘Fairy Cave’ and Catherine’s elf-bolts—are based on early to mid-nineteenth-century Haworth folklore. The article finishes with an appendix on the Gytrash (a legendary being familiar from Jane Eyre).

Symbolic Meanings of Violets in Villette
pp. 116-128 Author: Miwa Uhara
Charlotte Brontë bestows symbolic meanings in her novels on some of the vegetation based on their popular meanings and images, and she would have expected contemporary readers to know the meanings of such vegetation. Villette (1853) is marked by the symbolical use of violets. Supported by the image of violets from the language of flowers that was popular in nineteenth-century Britain, this article explores several meanings at play in Brontë’s symbolic use of violets. Firstly, she uses a violet to contrast Paulina’s beauty with Ginevra’s. Secondly, M. Paul Emanuel also communicates his messages through violets. Thirdly, Lucy Snowe reminds us of Lucy Gray from Wordsworth’s poems because both women are associated with violets. And finally, M. Paul is linked to violets to both accentuate his Napoleonic characteristics and to symbolise his short life, evoking Hamlet. They imply his death and the end of his relationship with Lucy, an ending which is not clearly described at the end of the novel.

All true histories contain instruction’: Truth and Everyday Heroism in Agnes Grey
pp. 129-138 Author: Rosa Ortiz Notario
The writings of the Brontës have frequently been studied in relation to conceptions of heroism. More specifically, critics have focused on the influence of war heroes such as the Duke of Wellington or Napoleon in the early writings of the siblings, principally those authored by Charlotte and Branwell Brontë. This article, however, explores the conception of ‘everyday heroism’ in Anne Brontë’s novel Agnes Grey (1847). It argues that the ordinary characters portrayed in Brontë’s work embody qualities usually associated with the heroic. Further, the analysis of heroism can reveal new insights into the representation of gender roles and class relations in the novel.

Editorial - Reviews Section

Editorial. Reviews Section
p 139-140 Author: Carolyne Van Der Meer

Book Reviews

The Brontë Society Conference, The Brontës and the Wild, 9 September 2023
pp. 145-146 Author: Rose Dawn Gant

Wuthering Heights directed by Bryan Ferriter
pp. 148-150 Author: Bob Duckett

The Novelist of Wildfell Hall: A New Life of Anne Brontë
pp 150-153 Author: Bob Duckett

pp 153-155 Author: Tony Williams

pp 155-156 Author: Sarah Powell


pp 160-161

Brontë Studies is pleased to invite submissions for the 2024 iteration of the Brontë Studies Early Career Research Essay Prize. The prize aims to encourage new scholarship in the field of Brontë studies, recognise and reward outstanding achievement by new researchers, and support the professional development of the next generation of Brontë scholars.
The prize was established in honour of Margaret Smith. She remains one of the most important Brontë scholars of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. As well as (co-)editing scholarly editions of Jane Eyre, Shirley, Villette and The Professor, and co-editing The Oxford Companion to the Brontës with Christine Alexander, Smith is widely regarded for her field-defining volumes of The Letters of Charlotte Brontë (1995, 2000, 2005). Alongside numerous other publications and contributions to the Brontë Society, Smith published many original articles and reviews in Brontë Studies over the years. Her minutely researched, comprehensive and scrupulous work will continue to be an indispensable resource and inspiration for current and future generations of Brontë scholars.

Saturday, May 18, 2024

You can have your very own Brontë Parsonage as The Westmoreland Gazette reports that a similar building by the same architect is now for sale.
A striking country residence, echoing architectural nuances of the Brontë sisters' family home, is up for sale in Cumbria's Crosby Garrett.
Mossgill House is a property bearing a rich history and architectural symmetry with the Bronte's famous 'Parsonage' house in Haworth, Yorkshire.
The house was designed by the same architect responsible for curating the Parsonage home, with both featuring an identical entrance hall.
David Britton, managing director of David Britton Estates, said: "I love properties with a rich heritage and a tale to tell, and Mossgill House ticks all the boxes.
"The connection to the Brontë family is fascinating; parts of Mossgill are a direct replica of The Parsonage, which is now a popular tourist attraction.
"This property is substantial, with an acre of fantastic grounds.
"It’s full of history, charm, and a real touch of class."
Built around 1747, Mossgill was frequently visited by sisters Charlotte, Emily, and their father, Patrick Brontë, who was a close acquaintance of the Rev. William Fawcett, Mossgill's resident during that period. (Erin Gaskell)
Well, we don't know about those frequent visits, though.

Broadway World interviews Julie Benko who plays Jane in Theatre Raleigh's Jane Eyre the Musical.
What initially drew you to the role of Jane Eyre, and how did you feel when you were cast?  
There's a reason this story has remained popular for almost 200 years and gets a new screen adaptation every decade or so. It's timeless. I loved the idea of portraying not only a classic heroine but a deeply unconventional one. Jane is a strong, unique, complex, passionate character. But I can't deny how overwhelmed I felt when I saw the script! Jane almost never leaves the stage - we still haven't figured out where I can get a sip of water during Act 1! But, like Jane, I love a challenge. So there's a lot of joy in figuring out how to climb that mountain (or, in our case, those moors). 
How have you been preparing to portray Jane Eyre, and what aspects of her character do you find most compelling?
I've been re-reading the book and watching all the various film and TV adaptations. (So far, the 2006 BBC miniseries starring Ruth Wilson is my favorite for the Jane/Rochester relationship and the acting, but the 1996 Zeffirelli film has my favorite sets and some great scenes.) Jane is a fascinating character because she does everything on her own terms. She's quite serious. (She doesn't have Fanny Brice's sense of humor, that's for sure!) She comes from nothing and spends her childhood enduring trauma after trauma: the loss of her parents, abuse from her extended family, shaming and isolation at school. And yet she builds a good life for herself. She's honest, strong, and whip-smart, with a forthright confidence that belies her youth. She's not perfect; she can be judgmental, moralistic, and prickly. To watch someone with such a strong ethical code fall in love with such an enigmatic, flawed character as Rochester makes for thrilling drama. 
How does the musical adaptation of Jane Eyre enhance the story, and what are some of your favorite musical numbers from the production?
The book was one of the first novels to be written from the first-person point of view, so you are aware of everything that Jane is thinking. That adapts very well to the musical theater form, because the music gives voice to so much of Jane's inner monologue, which is often replaced in film adaptations with long gazes, mournful silences, and odd voiceover interjections. And because Jane's intensity of feeling is so strong, it's a natural fit for Paul Gordon and John Caird's sweeping score.
Can you describe a specific scene or moment in Jane Eyre that you find particularly powerful or moving?
We haven't even staged it yet, but every time I sing through the finale alone in my hotel room I can't stop crying. It's just so moving. When I imagine Rochester singing to the baby about how scared he is to be a parent but he'll keep trying to "be brave enough for love..." Even typing it, I'm getting weepy! [...]
How do you hope to connect with the audience through your portrayal of Jane Eyre in this production?
I'm especially excited that we are live-capturing this production, since it means that we will get to connect with audiences beyond whoever can fit in the (quite intimate) room with us. This is such a gorgeous piece and I'm ready for the world to discover (or rediscover) it.
What do you think makes Theatre Raleigh's production of Jane Eyre unique, and why should audiences come to see it?
The space is so beautifully intimate that audiences will feel inside the story with us, no matter where they sit. It's also incredible to see what this troupe of 11 actors can do. Almost everyone plays at least two roles (many play more!). It's truly a celebration of The Theatre and of what we can create using our imaginations, language, and music.
There is so much magic in the simplicity and playfulness of this kind of storytelling. Megan McGinnis is doing such a beautiful job of making this classic romance feel exciting, current, poignant, and honest. And John Caird and Paul Gordon are flying in to work on it as well. When do you get to re-develop shows with the authors?! How special is that?! This is going to be an incredible production and I'm so lucky to be a part of it! (Joshua Wright)
In an interview for The Independent, actor Rafe Spall paraphrases (freely) from Wuthering Heights.
Rafe Spall is talking about love. “I’m lucky enough to know what love feels like,” he says, “because I’m a parent. There’s a line in Wuthering Heights – I’m paraphrasing, obviously – where Heathcliff says to Cathy, ‘Don’t you love me?’ And she says, ‘I don’t love you. You are me. I am you.’ When I think about my children, I think about that, a lot. It’s that sort of indescribable love.” (Charlotte O’Sullivan)
The Film Stage reviews Andrea Arnold's new film Bird.
 The director has gestured toward magical realism in her work before (think of the white horse in Fish Tank or the elemental yearning of her Wuthering Heights) but this first foray into anthropomorphism feels strangely surface-level and does more to break the film’s spell than enhance it. (Rory O'Connor)
The Saturday Paper reviews the novel Ordinary Human Love by Melissa Goode.
The cover art may reproduce a neoclassical marble sculpture, rather than a topless male model, and the novel itself might reference canonical works – Graham Greene’s The End of the Affair and Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre – but these intertexts are like red herrings. Goode’s novel, despite being about an affair, and one that ostensibly crosses class boundaries, is unfortunately not of their league. This is a romance in the universal sense of the term. (Maria Takolander)
Financial Times reviews the exhibition Now You See Us at Tate Britain.
Tellingly, even Georgian celebrity Angelica Kauffman kept tightly to neoclassical patriarchal themes, and her female figures are unthreatening, insipid — “Andromache Fainting”, women swooning at “The Return of Telemachus”. In the 19th century, the successful Pre-Raphaelite Marie Spartali Stillman painted heroines as dreamy, passive and flower-encircled (“The Rose from Armida’s Garden”) as those by her male colleagues. How fascinating that the Victorian novel boasts pioneering feminist heroines — Jane Eyre, Dorothea Brooke — while women painters remained shackled by convention. (Jackie Wullschläger)
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An online alert for next Wednesday, May 22. A joint event of the Brontë Parsonage Museum and The Elizabeth Gaskell's House:
Wednesday 22 May 2024, 19.00 h
An online talk in partnership with Elizabeth Gaskell's House

Literary success brought great acclaim to authors Elizabeth Gaskell and Charlotte Brontë; their debut novels, 'Mary Barton' and 'Jane Eyre', attracted huge public attention. Both found themselves thrust into a new world of Victorian celebrity.
So, how did these two gifted writers handle their new-found fame? Was Elizabeth Gaskell always keen for company? How did Charlotte Brontë’s legendary shyness affect her experience? And what did the world make of these two very different women?
Join Anthony Burton from the Gaskell Society and Andrew Stodolny from the Brontë Parsonage Museum for a look at the celebrity world of two giants of English literature.
This talk is the last in our season of events about Charlotte Brontë and Elizabeth Gaskell in partnership with Elizabeth Gaskell’s house.
This online event will take place via Zoom. This is a live event and will not be recorded.

Friday, May 17, 2024

Friday, May 17, 2024 11:13 am by Cristina in , , ,    No comments
So, it's almost all about the new season of Bridgerton today. Tanya Gold writes in The New Statesman,
And what a typical female writer Penelope Featherington (Nicola Couglan) is: shy, over-weight, awkward (when sex comes to her, she falls over in the street and lands on a shoe). Since the last journalist to grace a worldwide TV hit was Carrie Bradshaw of Sex in the City, who thought that if you bought the right desk the right novel would follow, I love Penelope with a weird intensity. She is close in spirit to anti-social Jane Austen (she hated Bath) and raging Charlotte Brontë (she hated children), though her object of hatred is herself, at least until she picks up a quill.  
According to The Telegraph (India),
this Regency-era drama is more about courtship, less about marriage, and the focus this season is on what happens between Penelope and Colin. Their romance is like a leaf out of the pages of Jane Austen’s Persuasion or Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre, sticking to the trope of a highly coveted man falling for the most unexpected, least noticeable woman. (Sanghamitra Chatterjee)
And according to The Irish Examiner,
The things Bridgerton does well, however, it does very, very well. The dynamic between Colin and Penelope – high-status guy falls for apparently undesirable girl – is stock (see everything from Jane Eyre to She’s All That), but here it hasn’t lost one iota of its centuries-old appeal. That’s partly to do with the acting: Coughlan is sensational as a woman who wallows in humiliation but cannot bring herself to relinquish hope, while Ruth Gemmell and Polly Walker’s performances as the meddling mamas of the Bridgerton and Featherington clans give the show its meatiness. (Rachel Aroesti)
The BBC shares (again) its KS4 / GCSE English Literature on Jane Eyre: a musical summary of the characters, plot and themes found in the novel.
12:44 am by M. in ,    No comments
A new production of Jane Eyre opens today in New London, CT. The adaptation was first premiered as a ZOOM film in 2020 and now has a stage production:
Adapted by Julie Butters from the novel by Charlotte Brontë
Directed by Victor Chiburis

May 17-19, 24-26
Fridays and Saturdays at 7pm
Sundays at 2pm
The Shaw Mansion
11 Blinman Street
New London, CT

Jane Eyre, an orphan in early nineteenth-century England, overcomes a loveless childhood to become governess to the ward of the enigmatic Mr. Rochester. Jane soon believes she’s found the home and the love she’s always yearned for, but Mr. Rochester’s dark secrets threaten to keep them apart. Blending gothic romance with a powerful story of personal growth, Jane Eyre explores one woman’s struggle to find love and independence despite barriers of gender, class, and circumstance. Leading the cast are Julie Butters of Salem, Mass., as Jane, Eric Michaelian of New London, Conn., as Mr. Rochester.

“Jane is fiercely determined to control her own destiny and stay true to her convictions despite immense external pressure,” says Butters, who adapted Jane Eyre and, previously, Little Women for Flock. “That makes her as compelling today as in 1847 when the novel was published.”

Originally set to be performed in New London’s historic Shaw Mansion in 2020, the production was waylaid due to the global pandemic and adapted into a Zoom film. Now in 2024, the show finally gets its live debut at the Shaw Mansion. This will be the first Shaw performance for Flock since 2019’s Pride & Prejudice.

Further information in The Day

Thursday, May 16, 2024

Thursday, May 16, 2024 7:39 am by Cristina in , , , ,    No comments
Mental Floss has selected '10 of the Greatest Love Stories in Novels' including
9. Jane Eyre (1847) // Charlotte Brontë
Jane Eyre’s road to romance with Edward Rochester is long and windy. Jane lives a troubled, and at times tragic, life—but her refusal to stray from her principles allows her to ultimately find the love she has longed for. Several parts of the novel were inspired by Brontë’s own life: Like the main character, she too had once attended a cruel school and worked as a governess; Brontë also once visited an estate that had its own “madwoman” hidden away. (Kerry Wolfe)
Observer recommends '10 Must-Read Retellings of the Best Classic Books' and no, it's not Wide Sargasso Sea that's on the list.
Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye
There are a lot of ways to update the classics, but converting a meek Victorian orphan into a serial killer has to be among the most creative. “Reader, I murdered him,” announces Jane Steele, early in the novel that bears her name. Lyndsay Faye harnesses the rage women feel, both on and off the page, at being at the mercy of the patriarchy. The resulting work of satirical historical fiction not only channels Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre but also Charles Dickens’s Nicholas Nickleby and Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca. Wicked fun. (Jessica Allen)
A contributor to The Daily Star writes about being a 'romance reader'.
The young adult series The Princess Diaries (HarperTrophy, 2000) by May [sic] Cabot was my first foray into any sort of romance during my preteens. However, Brontë and Austen were the gateway to my fascination for not only romance genre, but also a particular brand within it, mostly featuring Byronic heroes with a touch of dark, broody and mysterious demeanors. Add some banter, troubled past, a mix of possessiveness and jealousy—and you had me at hello. [...]
The intensity of the Brontë heroes, on the other hand, personified the Byronic trait to me. While Mr. Rochester, for me, was the only redeemable quality of Jane Eyre (Smith, Elder & Co. 1847), a book whose plot and pacing underwhelmed, Heathcliff, despite being an anti-hero, made Wuthering Heights (1847) far more interesting to me with his volatility. (Towrin Zaman)
IndieWire discusses how Bridgerton has 'Changed How Period Shows Dress'.
But if one looks at costumes from Regency romances 10 or 15 years before “Bridgerton” first aired in 2020  — your “Pride & Prejudice” circa 2005, your 2011 “Jane Eyre” — that visual language of Regency romances is a little different than it is now. One finds lots of Regency heroines in white or muted colors, with rather modest fabric patterns, and at least sometimes wearing the bonnets and cloaks that were part of women’s dress in that era. Shiny fabrics, richer colors, and bigger or more geometric, sculpted shapes appear rarely and only for the high society women we are meant to regard with suspicion.  
“Bridgerton” goes much farther and way harder. The show has created a heightened, alternate version of Regency England, and its costumes echo that in their more fantastic, stylized approach to clothing. (Sarah Shachat)
A Thursday Talk at the Brontë Parsonage Museum:
Thu May 16th 2:00pm - 2:45pm
The Old School Room, Church St, Haworth, Keighley BD22 8DR, UK

Villette, Charlotte’s final novel, is a haunted book: haunted by its author, being deeply autobiographical, and haunted by a city – one Charlotte knew she would never see again and which, for us, no longer exists. This talk explores the writing of Villette, its impact and its afterlife.